CentEast spotlights Eastern European film production
by Martin Kudláč
- The industry section of the Warsaw Film Festival hosted the 11th edition of the CentEast Market
During the Warsaw Film Festival, the 11th edition of the CentEast Market welcomed over 250 professionals, including over 80 representatives of production companies, 24 buyers, 33 guests from film festivals and 26 sales agents. “This year, we had a record number of submissions of Eastern European works in progress; also, the participation in the works-in-progress session and interest in the showcased projects were more than satisfactory. We are now very much looking forward to learning about any outcomes and are ready to support the further promotion of the projects,” Ela Wtulich, head of CentEast, told Cineuropa.
CentEast kicked off with the presentations of selected works in progress from 11 countries in the Eastern European region, including Belarus, Bulgaria, Ukraine and Moldova (see the news). The majority of the projects were already at, or on the verge of entering, the final stage of production, and were therefore seeking festivals, distributors and sales agents. The director and producer of Slovakian thriller The Red Captain [+see also:
film profile] (see the news), Michal Kollár, was looking for genre festivals, while Bulgarian producer Zornitsa Sophia was after an estimated €30,000 in video and sound post-production for the period film Chieftain, which she directs and stars in.
Another part of CentEast is the China-Eastern Europe Film Promotion Project “launched three years ago by the Warsaw Film Foundation, the Beijing Film Market and Film Factory to facilitate collaborations and understanding between the two sides and to promote Eastern European cinema in China, one of the fastest-growing film markets”, according to Wtulich. Et Hu of networking platform Film Factory, which supports independent filmmaking in China, provided some general information on the current situation in the Chinese film industry: the number of movies produced last year stood at 618, whereas 259 titles were screened, 70 of which were imports (including 39 from the USA).
“As one of our goals is to give more visibility to Polish cinema, this year we decided to turn the spotlight on young, emerging Polish film producers,” said the head of CentEast. “The aim is not only to strengthen and facilitate collaborations in the field of co-production, but also to give them the opportunity to make new connections which – we hope – will pay dividends in the near future.” Alongside this, there were closed screenings of recent Polish films during CentEast, including Kuba Czekaj’s twisted take on a coming-of-age story in the somewhat Švankmajer-esque Baby Bump [+see also:
interview: Kuba Czekaj
film profile], Marcin Wrona’s Demon [+see also:
film profile], the thriller Hel by Katia Priwieziencew and Pawel Tarasiewicz, and the three-story omnibus by three directors, New World.